Annual Report 2014

Glengarry Historical Society Moves Forward
The Glengarry Historical Society (GHS) has undergone a significant transformation during the last four years in response to the wishes of the community and government regulatory requirements. At the same time, the Society has continued to act as a steward and promoter of Glengarry’s rich heritage against a background of change and renewal.

The end of 2014 marks the culmination of these changes. The Society wishes to thank the many, many members of the Glengarry community who have worked tirelessly over the past four years to enable this transition and renewal and who continue to give generously of their time.

New Name and logo
In 2012, the GHS Board of Directors commissioned the design of a new logo as part of a process to re-brand the Society. However, the legal name of the Society will remain the same.

The new name, Glengarry History, will be used for marketing purposes to attract new members and new generations.

First Glengarry History Fair
In order to involve younger members of the community in the history of Glengarry, the first Glengarry History Fair will be held February 21, 2014 at the Sports Palace, Alexandria.

Glengarry students at the elementary, high school, college and university levels are invited to research and present topics connected to the rich and varied history of Glengarry. The presentations may be in any medium, and category winners will be eligible for bursaries.

This enterprise would not be possible without the enthusiasm and hard work of the the members of the History Fair Committee: Lisa Ellis, Susan McDougall, Gabrielle Stanton, Lindsey Howes and Julie Slater.

For more information go to:

New E-Version of Glengarry Life
From the late 60’s until the late 90’s the periodical, Glengarry Life, was published in hard copy. Moving with the times, the Glengarry History Editorial Committee (David Anderson, Dane Lanken and John Woodrow) is evaluating an electronic version.

Members and interested persons will be invited to submit articles on Glengarry history directly on-line. More information will follow shortly.

Glengarry History Lecture Series
Glengarry History continues to offer eight history lectures on Glengarry or on other topics of historic interest per year. Thanks to the unwavering endeavours of Suzanne Bujold, Carol MacMillan and Lorraine Cameron refreshments are also served during an after-talk social period.

If you interested in giving a talk or know someone who is, please contact Robin Flockton at

Upcoming Lectures winter/spring 2015

January 8, 2015 Permafrost Donaldson MacLeod Alexandria
February 5, 2015 George III and the Canadian Connection Lisa Ellis Williamstown
March 5, 2015 D.A MacDonald and the Montreal Waterworks Dane Lanken Alexandria
April 9, 2015 Glengarry’s Postal History David Anderson Williamstown

Alexandria Meetings at the Church-on-the-Hill.
Williamstown Meetings at the Nor’Wester’s and Loyalist Museum.

The Board of Directors has approved:

the acquisition of video equipment to enhance presentations;
exploration of alternative future central locations with a view to increased access and parking convenience for members;
a small fee of $5 per member and $10 per non-member for each lecture to cover expenses and fund Glengarry History Fair bursaries;
publication of the annual program in August of each year

Glengarry History Website

The Glengarry History website gives directors’ contact information, keeps members up-to-date with all developments (including a calendar of events throughout the year) and provides links to other groups involved in the stewardship and promotion of the history of Glengarry.

February 21, 2015 Glengarry History Fair. Sports Palace Alexandria
May 7, 2015 Annual General Meeting Guest Speaker Alexandria
June 11, 2015 GHS Picnic Sir John Johnson Manor House Williamstown

Glengarry History is indebted to John Woodrow for maintaining the site.

Glengarry History Purchases D.A. Macdonald Paper
& Invests in New Glengarry County Archives

The Society holds, in trust, a wealth of family papers and other documents related to the history of Glengarry, including the recently purchased papers of Donald Alexander (DA) Macdonald, the first MP for Glengarry following Confederation, Postmaster General of Canada and finally Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.

The preservation and cataloging of the GHS collection has been a concern for a considerable period of time. The formation of the Glengarry County Archives (GCA) by the Townships of North and South Glengarry offered a possible solution.

Recognizing the historic importance of this development, the GHS contributed $20,000 towards the start-up of the new County Archives. The GHS collection is now on “permanent loan” to GCA in the capable hands of volunteer County Archivist, Allan J MacDonald (formerly Deputy Archivist for Ontario).

The GCA opened in late September 2014. It is located at Glengarry District High School in Alexandria and is well signed. It is open to the public on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10.00 a.m. to 3.00 p.m. GHS members are welcome and encouraged to visit and use the GCA research room. For more information: (click on “things to do” and “Glengarry County Archives”).

Glengarry Pioneer Museum & Nor’Wester’s Museum Become Legally Independent
The Glengarry Historical Society was incorporated in 1962, to provide support for the then County Museum in Dunvegan (now known as the Glengarry Pioneer Museum). In 1967, as a centennial project, the Society founded the Nor’Wester’s & Loyalist Museum in Williamstown. The two museums operated as integral parts of GHS until 1989. At that time, GHS bylaws were amended to give each museum increased independence over activities and finance. However, legally they still fell under the auspices of GHS.

By 2010, the advent of increased government accountability, particularly relating to the Canada Revenue Agency necessitated changes to the relationship between the two museums and GHS. As a result, a study of the governance of GHS was instituted and multiple discussions took place between GHS and the two museums.

Glengarry Pioneer Museum

The community of the Glengarry Pioneer Museum opted for full legal independence, and,
at a special GHS members meeting in February 2013, this was granted. All legal and financial formalities connected with this development are now complete. For more information on events and exhibits, visit:

Nor’Wester’s & Loyalist Museum

In 2014, a salaried curator was hired to run the Nor’Wester’s & Loyalist Museum (NWL). At the same time, representatives of GHS, the Township of South Glengarry and the community of the NWL met frequently. In November 2014, they agreed to form a new corporation for NWL with a completely new and well-qualified Board of Directors. Incorporation will be complete in December 2014. For more information on NWL, visit:

GHS Board Maintains Links to Other Community History Organizations

In addition to their support of Glengarry History, the members of the GHS Board Directors provide a liaison with other organizations preserving and promoting the history of Glengarry:

President: Robin Flockton (Glengarry County Archives)
Vice President: Allan J. MacDonald (Glengarry County Archivist)
Treasurer: Don Wood
Secretary: Frances Fraser (Dalkeith Historical Society)
Director: David Anderson (Bethune-Thompson House and St Raphaels Ruins.)
Director: Michael Cowley-Owen (Glengarry Pioneer Museum)
Director: Bernie MacCulloch (St Raphaels Ruins)

Season’s Greetings, and every good wish for 2015
P.O.Box 416, Alexandria, ON, K0C 1B0